The AP Quotes Stanley Brand on Corporate Board Service by Members of Congress

Akin Gump senior counsel Stanley Brand has been quoted by The Associated Press in the story “Member of Congress, member of corporate board? It’s allowed,” regarding new scrutiny over the freedom members of Congress have to serve on corporate boards or to buy and sell stock in industries they help oversee.

The story follows the indictment this week of Rep. Chris Collins, a New York Republican, who was charged with insider trading. Collins, who sits on the board of directors of an Australian biotech company, was arrested and faces counts of conspiracy, securities fraud, wire fraud and making false statements to the FBI.

Members of Congress, the article reports, are not prohibited from serving on corporate boards as long as they do not receive any compensation for doing so. Brand said the strength of the laws against insider trading should allay fears about corporate board service by lawmakers. It is irrelevant, he said, whether members serve on boards. It’s what they do with sensitive information that counts.

Brand said the potential distraction of being on a corporate board should be a bigger concern. “Being a member of Congress is supposed to be a full-time job,” he added.